Prayers for Lent

O Lord, who hast mercy upon all,
take away from me my sins,
and mercifully kindle in me
the fire of thy Holy Spirit.
Take away from me the heart of stone,
and give me a heart of flesh,
a heart to love and adore Thee,
a heart to delight in Thee,
to follow and enjoy Thee, for Christ’s sake, Amen

St. Ambrose of Milan (AD 339-397)
[http://www.faithandworship.com/prayers_Lent]

 

Loving Father,
all the fancy words
in the world,
expressed in eloquent prose,
decorated with emotion,
spoken with conviction,
cannot compete with a heartfelt
‘sorry’
when all other words fail.
There are times
when we are all too aware
of our limitations,
conscious of sin,
and the distance it creates between us.
Sometimes ‘sorry’
is all the heart can bear to say aloud.

It is only you
who can read and understand
the language of our hearts,
only you who can translate our ‘sorry’
into the prayer we would have prayed,
if we had the words within us.
Then you forgive,
and having forgiven
surround us in an embrace of love,
drawing us close to your heart,
as it was always meant to be.
Thank you, Loving Father,
that you listen to hearts,
as well as voices.
Thank you.

From http://www.faithandworship.com/prayers_Lent

And there are many more, more traditional, prayers for Lent to be found at that same page.

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Two Prayers for the New Year

Image result for New Year blessing

Gathering Prayer
Loving God, as we gather today in this place,
We thank you for your unfailing love.
We pray that we may be rooted and established in your love.
We pray that we have power, together with all the saints,
to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ
and to know this love that surpasses knowledge –
that we may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of you.

Morning Prayer
Sometimes, Lord, it seems
my faith is mere gravel flying against the wind
of lovelessness and pain.
Yet You have chosen and placed me here;
laid Your grace deep within my being
used my fragments in Your kingdom-building plan.
I pray, Lord, that today
even my shakiest stones
might be a safe place for others to tread.
In Jesus’s name. Amen

From http://www.churchofscotland.org.uk/worship/starters_for_sunday/january
(for 17 January 2016) (Webmistress’s note: I see this source page is no longer available.)

Preparing for Advent

But wait – there’s more, from Rev Silvia Purdie, Minister at  Cashmere Presbyterian Church, Christchurch –http://www.conversations.net.nz/  (24 Nov 2017) –

PictureFor the Cashmere congregation this year we have prepared a simple photocopied booklet of Christmas readings, including a daily reading guide (with help from Catholic.com). It is not my own work but you’re welcome to view it HERE. It includes a couple of lovely poems from Madeline L’Engle’s fabulous ‘Winter Song’ book, as well as a couple of our very special Kiwi authors, Shirley Murray and Joy Cowley.

The light of the Christmas star to you
the warmth of home and hearth to you
the cheer and good will of friends to you
the love of the Son and God’s peace to you

An Advent and Christmas Miscellany

A Collection of Advent Poems, Prayers and Blessings

A Liturgy for Advent and Christmas

Betty Shore has sent us an Advent/Nativity reflection/study she used with a group. You may be able to use all or part of this

A Birth in Bethlehem – a Nativity Play – by Joy Kingsbury-Aitken

If Jesus Came for the First Time This Year – A Nativity Story with a Modern Twist – by Joy Kingsbury Aitken

A Collection of Christmas Prayers and Blessings

Psalms for Advent & Christmas

Also from Rev Silvia Purdie, Minister at  Cashmere Presbyterian Church, Christchurch –http://www.conversations.net.nz/  (24 Nov 2017) –

Looking for a Call to Worship during December … look no further!

Image result for waitingThe Lectionary Psalms this year are 80, 85, 126, 89, 97 & 98. These (plus a little extra) are paraphrased and formatted here for use in worship.

Click HERE to download the pdf.

Hot off the press – new Nativity drama!

From Rev Silvia Purdie, Minister at  Cashmere Presbyterian Church, Christchurch – http://www.conversations.net.nz/  (24 Nov 2017)

Image result for nativity angels

“The Angels’ Big Entrance” is a brand new nativity play – which means that it has all your favourite Christmas characters, includes various carols, and ends with the “ohhh” moment as the nativity scene is formed at the front. It has 5 speaking parts, plus you can involve as many children or whatever ages as show up on the day without needing rehearing. This play is from the perspective of the angels: there’s Gabriel keen for his big moment, and 2 assistant angels running around trying to find out where the Messiah will be born.

Download the script of the play HERE

Download the powerpoint to go with it HERE  –  please note – some editing may be required, e.g., adjusting the graphics to fit the shape and size of the slides